Cybersecurity for the army, cyberdefense training

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What is cyber defense?

Cyber defense includes all protection activities conducted militarily within cyberspace. Its purpose is to guarantee the security of the armed forces, the proper conduct of missions, as well as the protection of the ministry. Contemporary crises no longer take place only in a physical space, but in a digital environment. Criminal attacks can have just as dramatic consequences as in the real world. The army is thus integrating cyber combat into its global field of action against conflicts of all types.

Cyber defense has been recognized as playing a major role in the military posture since 2017. This change in status has occurred in parallel with technological change, thus multiplying the threats to national security.

Why do cybersecurity training for the military?

The field of cybersecurity has gained considerable popularity in recent years. Its emergence was made in conjunction with the development of new technologies. Thus, digital threats have become real national security issues and the demand for experts in this field has literally exploded in recent years. Companies, but also the French army, have a growing need for them. It is therefore a profession of the future that brings many advantages:

  • Working for the military guarantees that housing and meals are fully covered. This is an important consideration for anyone who wants to live a comfortable lifestyle in addition to their career.
  • From the beginning of the assignment, the salary offered is 1374 euros net, excluding bonus. For outdoor assignments, the remuneration is multiplied by 2.5. Thus, in addition to the initial benefits, the salary can quickly evolve and double depending on the operations in progress.
  • Another interesting fact about the business is that the transportation is highly discounted. In fact, the state offers a 75% discount on all SNCF trips, all year round.

What is cybersecurity training for the military?

The commitment is two years for a complete training. The aim of this course is to provide the necessary keys to master all the parameters of network security. The program proposed during these two years is based on

  • a common core established by the Ministry of Higher Education
  • a comprehensive education on cyber defense
  • Mental and physical preparation for the military environment
  • complete preparation for the TOEIC, the benchmark in English language learning, in a professional setting

How do you do cybersecurity training for the military?

The training to join the army’s cybersecurity section takes place over two years and prepares future cyber soldiers for computer threats, both on digital networks and during military operations. The selection is made via the Parcoursup platform.

This training is intended for holders of a bachelor’s degree:

  • Bac S with a major in mathematics, computer science and physics
  • Bac pro digital systems option computer networks
  • Bac STI2D – Science and technology of industry and sustainable development

Since 2017, the Saint-Cyr-l’école high school has welcomed about thirty students to complete a BTS Digital Computer and Network Systems, Cyber Defense option. Two years of knowledge harmonization and specialization to enrich the army with qualified technicians to face the threats of cyber attacks. The BTS SN – IR program thus allows the teaching of general disciplines:

  • science and technology
  • mathematics
  • English
  • general culture and expression
  • economy

but also professional education

  • networks and communication
  • data organization
  • development chain
  • system architecture
  • operating system

Additional lessons are added to the program:

  • Learning a rare language (Arabic, Russian…)
  • English certification (TOEIC)
  • 4 hours of sport per week
  • 4 weekly hours of specific teaching in cybersecurity

Finally, the curriculum must be validated by a 6-week internship at the Ministry of the Army. This experience meets the need to be confronted with concrete cases, beyond the theoretical teachings. But in addition, the student is confronted with the military environment.

What are the prerequisites for working in cybersecurity for the military?

For all candidates wishing to complete a course of study in order to join the army’s cybersecurity section, all school profiles having obtained the Bac can try their luck. However, candidates with a preference for scientific disciplines will have a much better ability to assimilate the program. The use of a technical language, the interpretation of results obtained from simulation requires a deep scientific culture. Other prerequisites are essential for the smooth running of the operations.

  • To be interested in the operation and implementation of telecommunication materials, in the pre-industrialization of electronic devices and their maintenance.
  • have the ability to communicate a principle, a concept or a process
  • enjoy teamwork and know how to integrate into group work
  • Know how to communicate and argue in English, in a precise and technical language
  • Demonstrate autonomy, mutual aid and creativity in crisis or emergency situations

What are the opportunities for a cybersecurity education for the military?

Upon graduation with a degree in cybersecurity, students can choose between two types of career opportunities

  • The military route, with a position of sub-officer transmitter, directly anchored in the Army
  • The civilian route, with a position as a technician, either in the Army or in specialized services. In any case, employability is assured, with the possibility of becoming a manager later on, leading a whole team of technicians

What are the differences between cybersecurity for the military and for civilians?

In a war situation, the equipment used to carry out an offensive action against the enemy (weapons, vehicles, communication systems, equipment) has always been designed and adapted to a hostile environment. War, in its classical definition, requires monumental logistical, human and financial means.

The confrontations of cyberspace have completely changed the situation. Indeed, cyberattacks do not require large human organizations or highly developed technical means. Today, if he has the necessary computer knowledge, a lone individual can carry out a cyber attack against a company, an administration or even a state. Computer warfare is more about creativity, knowledge of computer systems, and some form of agility. Whether it is to parasitize an information system, to lead a campaign of discredit aimed at a political power, or simply to harm an industrial competitor, the war takes place in a more direct and much less expensive way, for an equivalent result.

Learn more about cybersecurity training

Updated 2 January 2024